The umbrella cockatoo at the Caldwell Zoo is named Sunny. He can be quite loud with his calls. This parrot-like bird is not quite as adept at learning to “talk” as some other species, but will learn some words or phrases if repeated often. Although we may not see them as we visit Sunny, he does have beautiful pale yellow feathers on the undersides of his wings and tail.

White or Umbrella Cockatoo

Cacatua alba

Distribution: Forests on the Indonesian Islands of Halmahera, Bacan, Ternate, Tidore, Kasiruta and Mandiole; There is an introduced breeding population in Taiwan

Diet in the Wild: Seeds, nuts, berries, fruits

Diet at Caldwell Zoo: Parrot pellets, various fruits and vegetables

IUCN Red List Status: Endangered, population decreasing

Threats: Trapping of wild birds for the pet trade, habitat loss due to logging, agriculture and mining

Interesting Facts:

The umbrella cockatoo is named for its large umbrella-shaped crest, which it may display when excited, surprised or aggravated.

Cockatoos are highly vocal and capable of making exceptionally loud calls. These calls can be used to communicate with other members of the flock over relatively long distances.


Sunny is very lovable and easy going and will even snuggle up in keepers coats at times. He is a major show boat and will always perform and dance for large groups in the Wild Bird Walkabout. In the winter he stays in a keeper work area and enjoys all the extra attention and treats. One of his favorite things to play with is pinecones that keepers have decorated with peanut butter.

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